Android Pay has officially launched in the UK, following the launch of Apple Pay in the country last year.
The move could signal a major shift to mobile payments in shops, as nearly 60% of the country’s smartphone users own an Android handset.
Until now, the facility had only been available in the US. The firm said it had chosen the UK as the next place to offer mobile payments because of British familiarity with contactless payments.
Apple Pay has been in use in the UK since last summer, with thousands of retail outlets – from sandwich shops to the London Underground – now accustomed to customers using their phones to pay.
The service works on Android versions 4.4 and higher that also have an NFC chip.
As with any other contactless transaction, payments under £30 do not have to be authenticated, with users merely being able to tap-and-go.
Payments over £30 can be authenticated by unlocking the smartphone either by PIN or fingerprint.
Like Apple Pay and Samsung Pay, Android Pay uses tokenisation to protect user information.
The user’s card information is never sent anywhere, instead it uses a virtual account number to represent your account information.
— Android (@Android) May 18, 2016